Signs of Head Lice
One sign is frequent itching. This is not caused by the lice biting the scalp as they inject an anaesthetic, but by an allergy to the lice which only affects about 30% of infected children.
Plus, as many of us now, just the mention of head lice can have us scratching our heads when we don't have lice, so scratching doesn't necessarily mean a child is infected. Small red dots behind the ears and on the nape of the neck may be headlice bites.
Lice can breed within 7 days of hatching - so weekly checks are essential especially if there are lice at your child's school or pre-school and you haevn't yet protected them, check their heads regularly.
Looking for Head Lice
Eggs can be seen under a strong light. Newly laid eggs will be found within about 1.5cm off the scalp. Older eggs that have hatched will glisten white and become noticeable as the hair grows and carries the cemented egg away from the scalp.
Another way is to use detection combing. This involves using a special fine-toothed head lice comb such as our "Ed Lice" comb with tooth spacing of less than 0.3mm, to comb through the hair. It works better on wet hair but can be used on dry hair. Detection combs are available from pharmacies, the "Ed Lice" comb is available directly from us.
With early detection, whilst there may seem to be a lot of eggs, only about a dozen lice at the most will be active at the time.